I’m a Christchurch based mixed media artist interested in experimentation and pushing the properties and combinations of materials.
Intuitive and process-driven, I play with a diverse range of materials from wood and metal to discarded train brake pads, lace, ash, bitumen, wax, pvc, sand, glitter and embroidery thread, not much is off limit. Reactions between materials and the conversation between them often leads into future works.
I likes to appreciate and notice things that others might overlook or consider mundane; and look at ways to alter, transform and reinvent. This could spark from a detail I’ve observed or a collection of objects that I’ve seen.
Sometimes feeling burdened or overwhelmed with too many ideas, I collect all my thoughts, images, drawings and notes in workbooks. Some things lie dormant for a while but usually intertwine back into my work at some stage. I think the subconscious has an influence.
Interested in the environment, in a state of flux, change and diversity, and the experiential, these usually underpin much of my work. Alongside this is a sense of longing, a displacement and hiraeth, a longing for a place that maybe never existed, a shadow that’s followed me all my life.
My process is often intuitive, which ignites surprise, and also embraces potential failure; with mistakes and accidentals often leading to powerful new ideas. With this is a very hands on approach which often results in a frenetic working style with multiple things happening at the same time. Often abandoning the brush, I use my hands and scrapers, whatever I think will create the marks/smudges/blurs/washes that I envisage.
In March 2023 I completed my Masters in Fine Arts from Canterbury University. I also have a degree in Landscape Architecture from Lincoln University and a degree in Fine Arts from Canterbury University. I’ve been a finalist in many awards including the Wallace Art Awards in 2017 and 2018, the Parkin Drawing Prize in 2020 and the Zonta Female Art Awards in 2021 and 2022. I’m looking forward to entering the Parkin Drawing Prize again this year.
My art website is www.karaburrowes.com which has a selection of some of my work. I like Instagram for the ability to keep a solid record of my daily finds, inspiration and recent works. My instagram account is www.instagram.com/karaburrowes.